the best book about summer

August 16, 2011

summer rain
I love a well-written book. Reading beautiful words rich with imagery makes my heart beat faster. The same is true for exquisitely illustrated pages. I love it when the illustrations are not merely images, but actual art. Art that you would pay a lot of money for or spend hours staring at in a museum.

There are a lot of really good stories out there. And there are plenty of art-filled books. But it is somewhat rare to find both an exquisite story combined with exquisite art.
Come On, Rain   [COME ON RAIN] [Hardcover]
Enter, Come On, Rain by Karen Hesse, illustrated by John J. Muth.

This book made my heart skip a few beats.

A little girl and her mama are hoping for rain on a sizzling, hot, southern summer day. (I can relate to this!)

The smell of hot tar and garbage bullies the air
as I climb the steps to Jackie-Joyce's porch.
"Jackie-Joyce?" I breathe, pressing my nose against her screen." 

Jackie Joyce comes to the door. 
Her long legs, like two brown string beans, 
sprout from her shorts. 
"It's going to rain," I whisper.
"Put on your suit and come straight over." 

The girls get their swim suits on and enjoy frolicking in the summer rain--which is beautiful. The image of four girls running barefoot through the warm rain makes me smile--especially as I think of my own girls doing this very same thing together one day.

But here's where it gets really good: the girls make such a racket that their moms rush out to see what is going on--and then THEY join in, too!

Mothers and daughters running barefoot through the streets together.

We swing our wet and wild-haired mammas 'til we're all laughing under trinkets of silver rain.

As soon as we finished reading this book, Juliet looked at me wide-eyed and said, "I want to do THAT!"

So now, we're just waiting for rain.

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